CB Radios, also known as citizens band radios, are a type of radio that transmits along a special bandwidth (technically 40 channels within 27 MHz). These frequencies are shared frequencies that allow personal and business communication without a radio license issued by the government. Nearly every major country has these channels. These channels are shared between users and only one frequency may be transmitted at a time so all other users have to wait for the channel to be used. Nonetheless, this is not as impractical as it sounds. CB is still popular in rural areas, among truck drivers, and for radio hobbyists as well.
CBs unfortunately have a few drawbacks. For one, they require a long antenna to transmit signals. Additionally, they don’t pass through walls well, making them unsuitable for most indoor use. This explains their popularity among truck drivers and in rural areas where signals can be transmitted much more easily. This aspect has turned many urban businesses off to this radio and has transitioned the cheaper family communication devices to other channels on the bandwidth.
Despite these drawbacks, CB has many adherents and many people are well aware of its use because of the large hobby community surrounding it. CB is famously known for its ‘handles,’ which are the nicknames inside the CB channels – a precursor to the avatars and screen names of the modern web age. CBs can be used on higher or lower frequencies, however this is illegal. Additionally, CBs even have the power to transmit signals around the world during certain times of the year.